Legend Of Zelda Timeline

Legend Of Zelda Timeline

The Legend Of Zelda's chronology or timeline has held millions of gamers around the world in suspense for more than a quarter of a century. It has given rise to original, unusual or crazy theories. The Zelda saga's timeline was finally revealed in its entirety in 2011 in a book published by Nintendo, putting an end to years of fierce speculation by fans. 

If you want to have a clearer picture of Zelda's timeline, then you should sit back, get your favourite tea or coffee, and read our Legend Of Zelda Timeline article !

The Birth of a Hero

Back in 2011, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of The Legend of Zelda saga, Nintendo published an encyclopedia called Hyrule Historia. This book, aimed at collectors, featured artworks, commentaries written by the game's creators as well as a long-awaited Zelda timeline.

This calendar, which presents the order of succession of the games in a fantasy temporality that would be that of the heroes of the saga, was particularly hoped for by fans. Fans have been sharing their own chronological theories on the Internet for a long time, willingly placing a game at a certain time according to an order determined by their overflowing imagination.

The encyclopedia has put an end to decades of speculation around a question that used to agitate gamers, and which may seem incomprehensible to any human being who has never laid his hands on a Zelda: with which adventure did it all begin? What are the paths followed by Link, the hero, as he fights against Ganondorf, his recurring enemy ?

Zelda Timeline: The Legend Begins

The timeline starts with a recent episode, Skyward Sword. In it, Link is 20 years old and lives on Skyloft, an island high above the clouds. Faced with a choice at the end of his adventure, he decides to stay on the mainland with Zelda, where the kingdom of Hyrule so well known to fans of the saga will be established.

Link is then rejuvenated for The Minish Cap, a transitional episode in which he meets the evil mage called Vaati, who will again be the enemy to kill in Four Swords. Then it's Ocarina of Time in which Link becomes the Hero of Time, facing Ganondorf who has become the Demon King Ganon in a kingdom that has turned into the World of Darkness.

Here, the timeline is divided into two timelines, depending on whether Link defeated Ganon or lost the fight.

The Legend of the Goddesses and the Hero includes the following games, that we chose to sum up in order to gain more context :

1. Skyward Sword (2011)

This story has been passed down from generation to generation. Thousands of years later, some believe that the storm is quietly raging...One day, the earth cracked and evil forces emerged. Their brutal assault plunged the land into deep despair. These forces did so in their desire to seize the ultimate power protected by Her Grace, the Goddess, a power without equal.

The Goddess sent the ultimate power and the last of the mortals into the heavens, lifting a portion of the earth out of the reach of the demonic hordes. The Goddess joined forces with the tribes that remained on the surface to seal off evil and restore peace. After thousands of years, the surface world has been forgotten by the humans of the heavens...

2. The Minish Cap (2004)

Long ago, evil spirits invaded the lands of Hyrule and the world was about to sink into darkness... 
It was then that the Minish, small beings from the heavens, gave a golden light and a sword to a brave man. This brave man armed with the golden light, a sword and great wisdom, fought the demons and restored peace to the world.

To express their gratitude, the people of Hyrule hold an annual festival in honor
the Minish. Much later, when the Minish have become legendary beings, Princess Zelda of Kingdom of Hyrule invites Link, her childhood friend, to go to the Minish party with her.

The legend says that...

"Every hundred years, a secret door opens and the Minish come to the lands of Hyrule."

This year is the centennial and the party is unusually large.

A tournament in memory of the heroes of the legend is held at Hyrule Castle during the festival.The winner of this tournament is called Vaati. He wins without much effort, using a dubious technique. No one among all the valorous participants manages to come up to his ankle. No one knows this mysterious man. But who is Vaati? What is he up to?

3. Four Swords Adventures (2004)

Long ago, in the heart of Hyrule, Vaati, an evil Wind Mage, began to kidnap young girls, each one more beautiful than the next. No one was able to fight him.The people of Hyrule were sinking into a deep despair.

Then a young traveler appeared with a heart full of courage, carrying a sword as his only weapon. When the young boy raised his sword, it split into four distinct beings. Legend has it that the four beings joined together in an effort to defeat Vaati.

The traveler, once again alone and unique, locked Vaati in the far reaches of Hyrule and sealed the prison with his sword. This place was named the "Shrine of the Four Sword".

Years passed...Vaati, the Wind Mage, escaped from his prison and kidnapped Zelda, the Princess of Hyrule. Then Zelda's childhood friend, a young boy named Link, seized the strange power of the Sword of Four to crush Vaati. After a bitter struggle, he managed to imprison the mage.

A wind of peace blew again on Hyrule... At least in appearance...

4. Orarina of Time (1998)

Link lives in the kokiri forest. The other children have a fairy except him. One day the Mojo Tree sends a fairy to wake Link up. The Mojo Tree (the protective spirit of the forest) summons Link, a child of the forest, to talk to him. He explains to him that his origins are not in the forest, like the other children who live there (the Kokiris), and that he has a quest to accomplish: to save Hyrule from a vile desert rider (Ganondorf) who wants to seize the Triforce. And so his quest begins. He receives from the Mojo Tree the ancestral stone of the forest, which he must give to the princess of Hyrule, Zelda. She asks him to bring back two other stones (given by Darunia and Ruto) that will allow him to unseal the door of the Temple of Time with the help of the Ocarina of Time. Behind this door lies the Legend Sword which will make Link, projected in time thanks to it and equipped with the ocarina, the hero of time.

Then comes the adult age...

Link intones the song of Time with the ocarina of Time in front of the pedestal of the three Ancestral stones. The door of Time opens and Link finds himself in the room where the sword of Legend (reminiscent of Excalibur) is located. Link approaches it and removes it from its base. He meets Rauru, one of the seven wise protectors of the Triforce, who tells him that the sword had put his soul to sleep for seven years, during which time the evil Ganondorf invaded Hyrule... Link has become taller and more powerful. He will be able to travel through time by inserting the Legendary Sword into its granite base to become younger or by removing it to become an adult. As an adult, Link can no longer use some of the items from his childhood, but he can ride a mare, Epona. The Legend Sword is a purifying blade that repels dark forces. Evil beings cannot touch it and only the Hero of Time (the chosen one) can remove it from its granite base. His quest now is to awaken the other six sages of Hyrule to defeat Ganondorf, guided by the mysterious Sheik.


Timeline of Defeat

Defeated by Ganon, Link remains an adult, but this failure marks the decline of Hyrule and the starting point of A Link to the Past, where the kingdom is divided between darkness and light. The episodes Oracle of Seasons and Oracle of Ages see the appearance of new enemies (Onox and Veran), while Link's Awakening propels its hero into an independent adventure on the island of Cocolint.

This tragic epic concludes with two games that are also the first created by Nintendo. The Legend of Zelda sees Link searching for the fragments of the Triforce in order to save Princess Zelda, who has managed to prevent Ganon from taking it. She is then plunged into an eternal sleep for Adventure of Link, the 2nd opus, which concludes with a battle against Dark Link.

The Decline of Hyrule and the Last Hero includes the following games :

1. A Link to the Past (1991)

2. Oracle of Seasons (2001)

3. Oracle of Ages (2001)

4. Link's Awakening (1993)

5. The Legend of Zelda (1986)

6. Adventure of Link (1987)


Timeline of Victory: childhood

Link's victory timeline in Ocarina of Time is divided, in turn, into two distinct but complementary timelines: Link remains a child or becomes an adult (in keeping with the OOT game, which separates the adventure into two eras).

As a child, Link finds himself trapped in the world of Termina in Majora's Mask, whose destruction he must prevent. This dark and desperate adventure seems to condition the rest of his life, since he is then plunged into the twilight world of Twilight Princess, a resolutely dramatic game in which Hyrule is the prey of shadows.

The saga ends, for Link as an adult, with the return of the evil couple Vaati/Ganondorf in Four Swords Adventures.

The Twilight Kingdom and the Hero's Legacy includes the following games:

1. Majora's Mask (2000)

2. Twilight Princess (2006)

3. Four Swords Adventures (2004)


Timeline of Victory: Adulthood

At the same time, Link lives as an adult, and probably spends a peaceful existence in a delivered Hyrule kingdom. Hundreds of years later, we find his descendant in The Wind Waker... aged 12 ! The blood of the hero of Time is still flowing. The new Link meets up with Ganondorf, his long-time enemy, in the remains of a Hyrule that has long since disappeared under the waters.

The adventures of this timeline end with the standalone episodes Phantom Hourglass and Spirit Tracks, which witness Link's discovery of new worlds. A continent is discovered on which a brand new kingdom of Hyrule is founded. The coherence of this timeline is ensured by the graphic continuity of the character, starting from TWW.

The hero of the winds and a new world includes the following games:

1. The Wind Waker (2003)

2. Phantom Hourglass (2007)

3. Spirit Tracks (2009)


What about you, did you expect the timelines to be this way ?

This should satisfy the many fans of the saga, and put an end to their endless speculations about the succession of Link and his princess' adventures. Come on, we're going back to play it, and this time, in order! And don't forget Tears of the Kingdom is coming...

I hope you enjoyed our Legend Of Zelda Timeline article.

1 comment

  • Robert

    My favorite game is Orarina of Time!

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